Claire’s Week in Books, 27th March to 3rd April


the flip sideThe Flip Side, by Shawn Johnson

It’s almost time for my once-in-four-years obsession with gymnastics, so this YA novel, co-written by gold medalist Shawn Johnson, is perfectly timed.

From the Goodreads blurb: Charlie Ryland has a secret. She may seem like your average high school sophomore—but she’s just really good at pretending.Because outside of school Charlie spends all her waking hours training to become one of the best gymnasts in the world. And it’s not easy flying under the radar when you’re aiming for Olympic gold…especially when an irresistible guy comes along and threatens to throw your whole world off balance.



The Nakeds, by Lisa Glattthe nakeds

I heard this one mentioned on the All The  Books podcast, and Lisa Glatt was also a writing instructor of Christina Haag’s, the author of one of my favourite books. So when Book Bub alerted me to its being discounted to 99c, I snagged it – even though it’s possibly on the slightly risque side for sweetish, innocentish not-s0-little me.

From the Goodreads blurb: A hit-and-run accident sends the lives of both driver and victim into unforeseen trajectories in a family drama set against the backdrop of the sexual revolution and 1970s California. The Nakeds is an absorbing, darkly comical story of love and desire, of forgiveness and the unforgivable, and the truths we sometimes hide underneath our very own skin.


House of Cards, by Michael Dobbshouse of cards

I’ve been thinking on and off about reading the novel on which the UK version of House of Cards is based. Another Book Bub bargain – $1.99.



the narrow doorThe Narrow Door, by Paul Lisicky

This is one of those books which I feel like I am meant to read. I am a little afraid of sad books, particularly ones with illness and death, but, as I discovered when he came to read to us at American University a few years ago (and then followed me back on Twitter, bless him) Paul Lisicky is a lovely guy with poetic sensibilities. Then Christina Haag quoted him on her Come to the Edge page: “What is a relationship? Six months or sixteen years: It all comes down to a handful of images. To tell a linear story would be to tell a lie. There are always concurrent narratives, and you can’t tell one without canceling the other one out. But images live outside time and causality. They float out there, as in a satellite.”  And then it was discounted at the AWP Book Fair. I picked it up, randomly read a paragraph, and it contained a truth on the fragility of friendship that I’ve been living with for months. Sold.

The Flip Side by Shawn Johnson


In Twenty YearsIn Twenty Years, by Allison Winn Scotch

I know Allison from The List App, and she kindly sent me a galley of her latest book. It’s a multiple-person point of view novel (five, to be precise) about a group of college friends who reunite on the weekend of what would have been the 40th birthday of one of the group. But in the wake of Bea’s death, as well as the inevitable wear and tear of life and frayed ambitions, the group has fractured and its members are hurting. Have fame, motherhood, marriage, professional succeess been all that the friends hoped for?  Will this time together help mend their now five-point star? Will it help mend them as people? I really enjoyed finding out. I definitely recommend you pack this for the beach – it’s out on 1st July.

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